Bottega Veneta


    You can't tell Bottega Veneta how to make sunglasses. Or maybe you could, but they would politely pretend to acknowledge you and then go back to their unique blend of design and craftsmanship. Bottega Veneta is a Venetian maker of artisanal leather goods since 1966, and in recent years they have lent their unique touch to shoes, home furniture, gifts, and eyewear. Bottega Veneta is a brand that zigs when all the other brands zag, and if that describes you, then take a look at our collection.

    A couple of things you should know about this label. They came up with a leather weaving technique that is a brand signature, and they have a reputation of amazing quality and of not needing to flaunt logos or initials. In fact, in the 1970s, when everyone from junior high school students to housewives at the tennis clubs had some designer's initials on their backside, BV used the tagline "When your own initials are enough." Ooh, snap!

    This doesn't mean they never bit the forbidden fruit of label-mongering. In the 1990s, they took leave of their trademark understated luxury and went for a more trend-driven, fashiony reputation. It may work out for some design houses, but not for BV. In 2001 they were acquired by Gucci Group, and the Spring and Summer collection for 2002 showed that they were returning the label to its origins. The visible logos went away, though the special leather weaving technique stayed, and the company returned their focus to high quality artisanal production. They've never looked back. In fact, in 2006, BV opened a school to train new leather artisans in an effort to promote the value of master leatherwork in Italy.

    So what can you expect from Bottega Veneta sunglasses?

    Perfect craftsmanship for one thing. And for another you can expect styles that don't play follow-the-leader. You can expect BV shades ot be big. As in, bigger than oversized in some cases, to provide maximum eye protection from ultraviolet rays. And you can expect frame styles that you won't find elsewhere.

    The BV 20/S is an oversized, modified aviator frame that you can get in Havana or Honey (a lovely golden shade), both with metallic accents at the bridge and temples. These are big frames: 65 mm, so they'll work great if you have strong facial features, a large face, or a particularly strong jawline. The BV 38/S is another strongly masculine style that holds its own against the 20/S (or any other oversized male aviator frame) Any one of these will make you handsome in a sort of Steve McQueen meets Federico Fellini way: unexpected, but definitely hot.

    For women, the BV 25/S is a slightly offbeat take on the oversized vacation frames. The frames themselves have a subtle abstract butterfly design in either beige or gray and will make you look as if you are either just back from, or about to go on, an amazing extended summer vacation in Capri.

    Bottega Veneta Sunglasses: the Italian rebel in you wants to come out and play.

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